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North American Fleets Sound Off on Supply Chain Constraints

North American Fleets Sound Off on Supply Chain Constraints

Automotive Fleet views itself as a facilitator to provide a platform for different voices from the industry to sound-off on today’s challenges. This regular column is designed to encourage discourse for fleet professionals to let their voices be heard to their peers and other industry professionals. Here is what is top of mind for North American  fleet professionals on the issue of inventory constraints and vehicle availability.

July 25, 2021

Retrospective on the Many Pain Points of 2021 M-Y

Retrospective on the Many Pain Points of 2021 M-Y

Two universal challenges faced by fleet managers in the 2021 model-year were longer lead times and tight product availability, particularly constrained was van and truck chassis availability. The COVID lockdowns in 2020 and the shutdown of all North American assembly plants from mid-March to mid-May 2020 triggered a domino effect resulting in delays with the new model-year bid process during a period of widespread budget constraints.

June 25, 2021

OTD Goes From Bad to Worse in MY-2020

OTD Goes From Bad to Worse in MY-2020

During the pre-pandemic period, 2020 OTD became extended due to a GM strike and strong order demand. The onset of the pandemic nearly halted OTD by idling non-essential fleets and closure of all OEM assembly plants.

September 29, 2020

Fewer Railcar Constraints but Transporter OTD Issues Persist

Fewer Railcar Constraints but Transporter OTD Issues Persist

During the 2020 model-year, the fleet industry did not experience significant railcar-related issues as seen in past model-years. However, fleets did report transportation issues with car haulers and last-mile deliveries to the dealers.

September 29, 2020

Chassis Shortages & COVID Infections Impact Upfitter OTD

Chassis Shortages & COVID Infections Impact Upfitter OTD

Upfitters experienced a whipsaw effect of robust fleet orders straining their pre-pandemic production capacity and within the space of a month were struggling with chassis shortages due to the suspension of vehicle production.

September 29, 2020

Chassis Shortages and Installation Backlogs Slow Upfitter Order-to-Delivery
Why Railcar Constraints Continue to Impact Order-to-Delivery

Why Railcar Constraints Continue to Impact Order-to-Delivery

In MY-2019, ongoing railcar shortages created huge backlogs of vehicles needing to be shipped. The railcar shortage has been a key factor for fleet delivery delays for the past 20 years. The question is when does it get fixed?

October 9, 2019

Work Trucks Vulnerable to Delivery Delays: How to Minimize Upfit Lead Time
Average Fleet Order-to-Delivery Times Worsen in 2019

Average Fleet Order-to-Delivery Times Worsen in 2019

Fleet order-to-delivery times for model-year 2019 increased in comparison to those in MY-2018. Delays were caused by rail constraints, plant downtimes, truck driver shortages, production capacity strains, and early order cutoffs.

September 24, 2019

Ongoing Strong Economy to Bolster 2020-MY Fleet Orders

Ongoing Strong Economy to Bolster 2020-MY Fleet Orders

The majority of fleets report new-vehicle acquisitions will continue to be elevated due to strong business growth, comparable to MY-2019, with most forecasting an increase or continuation of similar order volume in MY-2020.

July 16, 2019

10 Upfitting Proverbs From the School of Hard Knocks

10 Upfitting Proverbs From the School of Hard Knocks

A proverb is a phrase that gives real-world advice learned from practical experience. Upfitting is complicated and there are many opportunities to make mistakes, sometimes very expensive ones. Here are 10 proverbs for a successful upfit.

June 24, 2019

Biggest Challenges Facing Vocational Fleet Managers

Biggest Challenges Facing Vocational Fleet Managers

To get the pulse of the vocational truck and van market, I reached out to a wide cross-section of fleet managers around the country to find out what’s on their minds. Here’s a snapshot of what they told me.

November 7, 2018

Demand for Trucks and Vans Slow Fleet Deliveries

Demand for Trucks and Vans Slow Fleet Deliveries

Increased fleet orders for trucks and vans created backlogs at upfitter facilities, increasing lead times and missed ship-thrus. A shortage of rail autorack carriers further delayed deliveries. Despite this, order-to-delivery for most units was similar to 2017.

October 2, 2018

Upfitter Backlogs Created by Strong Truck Demand

Upfitter Backlogs Created by Strong Truck Demand

Strong demand for light- and medium-duty trucks in the 2018 model-year increased order-to-delivery (OTD) times, resulting in widespread upfitter backlogs despite reduced fleet allocation availability due to competing strong retail demand for trucks.

September 25, 2018

15 Ways to Improve Order-to-Delivery for the Next Model Year
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